healthcare

DC 37 and SEIU 32BJ Join Forces to Demand Accountability from Private Hospitals

December 13, 2019 // 0 Comments

Scores of members from DC 37 AFSCME and SEIU 32BJ, two of the city’s largest unions, attended a packed City Council hearing Dec 12 where leaders and representatives testified about runaway charges in NYC’s largest private hospitals. The unions presented testimony on the effects of skyrocketing costs for health care and asked the City Council to take action to curb practices by hospitals and health care providers that unreasonably ratchet up costs for needed care. “The single factor that’s had the most profound, negative impact on healthcare coverage in NYC is the cost of in- and out-patient care provided by the City’s non-profit, private hospitals,” said District Council 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido. “DC 37 and our brother and sister unions that make up the Municipal Labor Committee are doing our part to reduce hospital bills with changes in the design of our health [More...]

New Hep C Treatment Program Available at NYC Health + Hospitals

December 4, 2019 // 1 Comment

By GREGORY N. HEIRES DC 37 members suffering with Hepatitis C are now eligible to participate in a pilot program designed to effectively treat the disease and reduce the exorbitant cost of current prescription medications. The new treatment regimen, devised by NYC Health+Hospitals in collaboration with the DC 37 Health & Security Plan, is available to members and dependents under 65 who are covered by the union’s prescription drug benefit, which is administered by OptumRx. The NYC Health+Hospitals program, which typically lasts between 8-to-24 weeks, is designed to encourage patients to stick with its regimen of medication and other parts of the treatment. Participants are assigned Patient Navigators to guide them through the process. To date, 15 members have signed up for the program. The latest Hepatitis C drugs have a 90% percent cure rate of the illness, but are outrageously [More...]

Top Cancer Treatment Center Is Available To Help You

October 16, 2019 // 1 Comment

By GREGORY N. HEIRES One of the world’s premier cancer treatment centers has made it easier for DC 37 members and their families to access its services. Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Center’s MSK Direct program offers DC 37 members and their families who are covered by the EmblemHealth HMO and PPO plans guided access to MSK’s expert cancer treatment. Contact MSK Direct if you or a family member: ▪ are diagnosed with cancer and want to explore options for treatment at MSK; ▪ receive results from a medical test or exam that signal you may have cancer; ▪ are told by a doctor to schedule an appointment with an oncologist, or ▪ would like an in-person second opinion on a cancer diagnosis. The MSK Direct Team will arrange for a patient’s first appointment within two business days typically. The MSK Direct Team will: ▪ help gather necessary medical records for the [More...]

State Lawmakers Pass Patient Protection Legislation

June 22, 2019 // 0 Comments

DC 37 members scored a major victory earlier this week when the State legislature passed legislation that protects patients from excessive hospital emergency room charges. Passage comes after intense lobbying by a coalition of patient advocates, consumer health and business organizations, and unions, including DC 37. The legislation would strengthen our state’s current Surprise Hospital Bills Law and shield patients from price gouging by hospitals, an issue that threatens to bankrupt working families. When emergencies have caused city employees – and DC 37 members – to go to hospitals out of their network, insurance companies eventually pass on the cost of care to patients – either in higher rates or reduced benefits. This legislation helps establish a process to negotiate fair payments for excessive emergency care charges. In a letter to lawmakers signed by leaders of the [More...]

Unions Support Legislation to Curb Excessive ER Charges

June 7, 2019 // 0 Comments

By RUDY OROZCO DC 37 has joined the four of the state’s largest unions to call for legislation that seeks to protect patients from excessive hospital emergency room charges. DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido, 32BJ SEIU President Héctor Figueroa, United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew and Civil Service Employees Association President Danny Donohue backed the legislation in a joint letter they sent to state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and other legislators on June 3. The union leaders are pushing for the passage of NY S3171 (19R) / NY A264 (19R), which would protect patients from exorbitant costs for out-of-network emergency care, an issue they said “threatens to bankrupt working families.” They said the bills — which have yet to make it to the floor in either chamber — could also help members fight for [More...]

DC 37 and the City Agree on Unlimited Paid Sick Leave for 9/11 Heroes

October 24, 2018 // 1 Comment

By MIKE LEE After weeks of intense negotiations, the union won a landmark victory for our 9/11 first responders and other members who worked at the World Trade Center site during the rescue, recovery and cleanup. On Oct. 23, Mayor Bill de Blasio, DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido, Local 3621 President Vincent Variale and Local 2507 President Oren Barzilay announced that the city will provide unlimited 9/11 sick leave to city workers who participated in WTC rescue, recovery and cleanup operations and contracted a 9/11- related illness. The sick leave will be retroactive to Sept. 11, 2001, and cover an estimated 2,000 active city workers who work in several city agencies, including Emergency Medical Technicians, peace officers, laborers, engineers, among other job titles. The agreement forms a basis for future arrangements with other unions that represent eligible workers. “This [More...]